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This Accusation Against Tucker Carlson Shows the Right Is Still Not Sure How Fringe It Wants to Be

Conservative pundit Dinesh D’Souza claimed on Monday that Fox News host Tucker Carlson is suppressing D’Souza’s new documentary about alleged voter fraud in the 2020 presidential election.

SO WHAT

Thanks in great part to Donald Trump’s shattering of media norms, mainstream conservatives are now able to broach topics that would have previously been seen as beyond the pale. But where’s the line?

 

THE ACCUSATION

D’Souza, a polemical and influential commentator who boasts more than 2 million Twitter followers, claimed during a recent podcast that Carlson forbade a “Tucker Carlson Tonight” guest from mentioning the documentary, “2000 Mules,” on air.

Catherine Engelbrecht, founder of voter fraud watchdog “True the Vote,” appeared on Carslon’s show Thursday to discuss her organization’s finding of “rampant abuse” of ballot drop boxes in the 2020 presidential election.

  • Much of “True the Vote’s” work is featured in “2000 Mules,” but, according to D’Souza, Carlson directed one of his producers to instruct Engelbrecht to avoid referencing the film.
  • “This is the problem with Fox News,” D’Souza said Monday during his podcast. “You can’t get off the reservation because we can crucify you.”
  • D’Souza claimed “Tucker Carlson Tonight” executive producer Justin Wells sent him a series of “abusive” texts after D’Souza refused to allow the show to use “2000 Mules” footage without crediting his production company.

Also on Monday, D’Souza accused Newsmax of blacklisting him, tweeting: “I was booked on Grant Stinchfield’s Newsmax show and then the network cancelled on me.”

  • Emerald Robinson, a conservative journalist who was deemed too controversial for Newsmax, slammed Fox News and Carlson for allegedly suppressing D’Souza’s documentary in a blog post Tuesday.
  • The network “cannot allow Dinesh D’Souza’s new documentary ‘2000 Mules’ to be mentioned on their shows because Fox News told its audience for the last 18 months that election fraud was a myth pushed by conspiracy theorists,” she wrote.

THE TENSION

Right-leaning news networks have struggled to balance journalistic rigor with the airing of popular conservatives’ claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election.

  • In Dec. 2020, Fox News and Newsmax issued public statements pushing back against election fraud claims made by their own guests and hosts.

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